We asked Dunlop’s tyre expert Aveen Maharaj how to make sure your wheels stay in great shape and keep you safe.
Your tyres not only get you from A to B, they do so while carrying a vehicle more than 50 times their own weight and absorbing bumps and obstacles on the road. It’s extremely important that you keep those four wheels turning perfectly. Here’s what you should be paying attention to:
1. Tread Depth
Good grip, smooth steering in all weather conditions and easy braking all depend on your tread depth. Legally, your tread depth should be no less than 1.6mm. Make a point of checking this regularly and replacing your tyres when you reach the 1.6mm minimum.
Having too much air in your tyres means that the tread wears faster in the centre and the tyre has to be replaced much sooner than necessary. Too little air is just as bad, making the tyre unstable, reducing grip and increasing fuel consumption by around 10%. This also creates heat that may result in the tyre failing. To avoid this, use an inflation gauge to check your tyre pressure once a month and always follow the inflation guidelines supplied by your car manufacturer.
Balance refers to how weight is distributed within the tyre. If your tyres aren’t balanced properly, they tend to hop, vibrate, become noisier and ultimately have to be replaced earlier. To maintain perfect balance, you should have your wheels rotated by a professional every 8 000 to 10 000 kilometres.
Impact with a pothole or pavement can disturb the position of the tyres in relation to each other. Bad alignment affects the suspension and also wears your tyres out. Make sure that new tyres are properly aligned during fitting and consult a professional if you notice uneven wear or feel that your car is “pulling” more to one side.
Use your RCS Card at Dunlop for new tyres, balancing and alignment.